Funded! This project was successfully funded on April 9, 2012.

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A new way for artists to reference anatomy with a revolutionary app that bridges the gap between books and sculptures.

L'Ecorché is a groundbreaking, intuitive tool developed by artists, for artists to reference anatomy. It's not a book, it's not a sculpture. It's an elegant and painstakingly-detailed fusion of the two that takes the best of both and brings them into a whole new medium for learning.

Originally developed by animation sculptor Michael Defeo as a personal reference tool for his courses with anatomy expert Scott Eaton, this application has grown from a simple sculpture for the iPad into a fully-developed application for iPad, iPhone, Mac desktop and eventually Andriod and PC desktop platforms. With your help, it will be the most advanced and detailed learning tool of its kind.

Working with world-renowned anatomy expert Scott Eaton, Michael has designed an intuitive app that features classical, educational and instructional versions of Jean-Antoine Houdon's iconic "écorché." 

Rather than simply looking at a book or a sculpture, the artist can now:

  • tumble and zoom the model from 360 degree angles;
  • switch to Scott's updated version which keeps the original grace while providing anatomical corrections;
  • toggle an informational overlay which will reveal a full muscular map that includes text indicating origin, inserts and actions.
  • In addition, Scott is overseeing Michael's planar and primitive versions that will help the artist better understand the forms at play, with both artists working tirelessly to ensure maximum correctness, elegance, intuition and usability.

The human aspect behind this is a sculptor who wanted to make his reference work easier and realized that, with a little elbow grease (over 1,000 hours and counting) and a few bucks (over $8,000 of his own money so far), artists all over the world could have immediate and tangible reference to the intricate beauty of human anatomy. 

With a target launch date set for May 10, we now need your help to see us through. There aren't enough hours in the day for us to complete everything! Michael needs to hire assistants to remap all of the models and enter a ton of data, he needs to pay his attorney for all of the nitty gritty involved in a venture like this, and needs to continue to pay his amazing developer, Trevor Thompson, the ghost in the machine without whose mind and voodoo none of this would have gotten off the ground.

The point is that this a great idea that will be extremely useful for artists, and we're working hard to make sure it's as pristine, beautiful and as educational as possible.  And we're doing it all while trying to make a living as artists ourselves. We are so. Damned. Close.

Anything, and we mean anything you can give will be so appreciated. If you can't afford money, then shoot this link out to your social networks. All of you can help us get this thing out there.

Thanks so much.

Michael Defeo (& co.)

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    19 backers

    You're keen and you'll be acknowledged in the thank you section of the app.

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    169 backers

    You're keen too! You'll be acknowledged in the thank you section AND you'll receive a spanking new copy of the app!

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    50 backers

    Your enthusiasm and generosity are so appreciated. You'll be acknowledged in the thank you section, you'll have a copy of the app AND you'll receive an unframed, signed art print of the Ecorché with informational overlay.

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    17 backers

    You're a generous, curious soul and your enthusiasm is so uplifting. You'll be acknowledged in the thank you section, will have a copy of the app, AND you'll get a limited edition, awesome and sexy t-shirt that other people will be pretty envious of.

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    6 backers Limited (44 left of 50)

    Holy crap. Thank you! In addition to my awe and good thoughts, you'll be acknowledged in the thank you section, you'll have a copy of the app, your own limited edition, awesome and sexy t-shirt, AND an unframed, signed art print of the Ecorché!

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    3 backers

    I think we should take this relationship to the next level. Of course you'll be acknowledged in the thank you section, of course you'll have a version of the app and an unframed, signed art print of the Ecorché. FURTHERMORE, your generous support will receive a one-hour, personal design/sculpting consultation with me, Michael Defeo, in proximity to NYC or via web.

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    2 backers Limited (3 left of 5)

    This is getting serious, and I deeply appreciate your enthusiasm and generosity. You have a choice of one of the following for your gift: (1) A series of four 15-minute personalized video critiques and consultation for your work. With me. (2) One design consultation with me for an existing project; or (3) a signed, 4" maquette bust of one of my personal pieces from my Paris Sketch series. Whichever of these three gifts you choose, you will also receive a signed, unframed art print of the Ecorché, a copy of the app and acknowledgement in the thank you section. And my sincerest good thoughts.

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    0 backers Limited (7 left of 7)

    You are a savvy, swell and keen person who realizes that a good producer is one who saves the most money. At a fraction of my day rate, this gift level will receive my one-pass translation of your existing 2-D character into 3-D, via ZBrush. Still images, QuickTime movies and ZBrush file will be included. Limited to 7 projects completed on a first-come, first-served basis. (You'll also have a copy of the app, a t-shirt, an art print and acknowledgement in the thank you section, in addition to my personal thanks for your stunning generosity.)

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Funding period

- (31 days)